Grants to fund before-school, after-school programs


LITTLE ROCK — The Arkansas Department of Education said Thursday that 19 schools and two school districts in the state have been awarded federal grants to fund before- and after-school programs.

The 21st Century Community Learning Center grants are funded by the U.S. Department of Education and will support programs for five years. Each school or district will receive $150,000 in the 2014-15 school year, $150,000 in 2015-16 and $120,000 each year for the next three years, the Department of Education said.

The grants will bring the number of school programs in Arkansas funded by the grant program to 91.

To qualify, a school or district must have at least 40 percent of its students eligible for free or reduced-price lunches and must offer a program for at least 12 hours a week, 25 weeks a year.

The grants were awarded to the Dermott School District, the Prescott School District and 19 schools in the Bald Knob, Booneville, Cabot, Clinton, Dardanelle, Drew Central, Helena-West Helena, Hermitage, Jessieville, Little Rock, Marvell, Monticello, Pulaski County Special, Springdale and West Memphis school districts.